Hillary’s tactics show it is now harder to deliver last-minute hits that cannot be contested. And, that’s good for democracy. 1/9/08Posted by Steve Boriss in LateHits.
As legendary Wall Street Journal editor Robert Bartley once noted, the center-left mainstream media has a history of working with Democrats and their allies to deliver last-minute hits on conservatives, which he dates back to the campaign against Supreme Court nominee Robert Bork. This included the 1992 weekend-before-the-election leak of the Iran-Contra indictment of Caspar Weinberger and others, perhaps handing-over the Presidency to Clinton from Bush I, who had fought back to within 1 point. More recently, we witnessed the 2000 weekend-before-the-election exposure of a 24-year-old Bush II drunk-driving arrest that surely cost him the popular vote, and almost cost him the election.
But now, Hillary Clinton seems to recognize that even the weekend before might not be enough anymore given that the blogosphere can contradict and swat-down a story within hours (e.g. Dan Rather’s Bush II story on the Texas National Guard based on forged documents). Perhaps that’s why she waited until the last 24 hours before the NH Primary to conduct what were arguably manipulative stunts that the pundits and the blogosphere were just gearing-up to shred – the genuineness of her tears and the implausibility of two men standing-up at one of her appearances holding a sign that said “Iron my Shirt.” The fact that it is now harder for candidates like Clinton to slip-in late hits like these that go uncontested is a very positive step for those who believe the people are best served when they have heard both sides of the story.